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September 2, 1939


JAMA. 1939;113(10):927-928. doi:10.1001/jama.1939.72800350003010a

A leather manufacturing company recently reported that certain of their Negro workers who wore rubber gloves were becoming depigmented over the areas on the hands and forearms covered by the gloves. An examination of the workers showed that all of them, Negro and white, who wore a certain brand of gloves were affected not only on the arms but several of them on the covered parts of the body (figs. 1 and 2).

A similar condition was found in other tanneries, plating works, electrical apparatus manufactories and all other places investigated where that particular brand of gloves was worn.

The ingredients used in the gloves and the method of their manufacture were obtained from the company making them.

Patch tests performed on the affected workers with the chemicals in the gloves showed that an antioxidant caused positive reactions on all of them, and after a few days when the inflammation